Amanda Gruendell believed for most of her life, that she would never birth children.
As a teen, Gruendell discovered she was born without a uterus and spent many years wrestling with this fact.
But thanks to science, Gruendell would go on to become a mom after receiving a uterus transplant from a deceased donor and eventually, getting pregnant through IVF.
The Utah native was 32 and divorced when she began to think about children. But without a uterus, she felt her options were severely limited.
But it was at that moment her friend recommended she explore a uterine transplant. The friend then referred Gruendell to the Cleveland Clinic, where experts were conducting a groundbreaking uterine transplantation trial program.
Thanks to the encouragement of her friends, family, and her now-husband John, Gruendell eventually underwent a successful uterine transplant.
And while she had a fully functional reproductive system, she wasn’t quite out of the woods yet. Getting pregnant was not easy for Gruendell. After many months of multiple rounds of IVF, finally, Gruendell was pregnant — and during a pandemic.
“Remember, I spend a lot of time with infertility folks?” Amanda wrote to her blog. “I trust my doctors with my life, but I’m also hyper aware of what to expect with IVF. Also, if you didn’t know, my three retrievals were dang hard and that’s probably an understatement. So, in many ways, I have been trying to err on the side of caution. I can’t even begin to tell you what it was like to be back at the clinic and have things go so well.”
And in March, Greundell gave birth to a healthy baby girl, Grace, who weighed in at 6 lbs., 11 oz. Around the same time Amanda was accepted into the trial, her mom, Janet, was diagnosed with ovarian cancer.
Amanda says her mom had a dream and told her, “I met your daughter. Her name is Grace, and she looks just like you.”
“I’ve waited my whole life to meet Grace,” the mother admitted. The new mom recently showed off her new baby to her Instagram with the caption: “Oh how I’ve waited to see a child of mine in the arms of our special visitor today. Makes my heart melt to see these two together.”
With a background in the creative and educational fields, Amelia Finefrock is freelance writer, singer-songwriter and nanny based in Chicago.
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